Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Weird Wednesday

Why were there so many weird painters from Belgium (cf James Ensor and Felicien Rops)? Is it because Belgium is so boring it sent them mad? Here are a few items by Antione Wiertz (1806-1865), whose stuff was considered so shocking that it was hidden away in a private gallery in Brussels from which sensitive maids and striplings were excluded. I believe the same gallery now constitutes the Musee Antione Wiertz.
The top two are details of Wiertz's astonishing triptych 'Last Thoughts and Visions of a Decapitated Head'; the one below a separate (if you'll pardon the pun) 'Guillotined Head'; and finally his famous image of 'Premature Burial'. Gothic painter par excellence was weird Wiertz.

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